Re: BP: Reds Transaction Analysis-Wily Mo Pena, Ross etc.
WMP is a much better risk-- he improved a LOT in 2004 and held at that level in 2005. Reds are betting that he plateaued, but 24-year-olds improve, and 24-year-olds that have already played a lot in the majors often become stars.
Arroyo is much more the risk, because he's not actually coming off a plateau, he's coming off a decline. In his defense, pitchers are pretty unpredictable-- what looks like a decline often turns out to be just a bad year. The declining K's are the big red flag.
WMP has tools that could still be skills. And he has the biggest skill: power.
Arroyo's biggest "skills" are that he might be able to give innings and he has an acceptable contract.
the Reds took on more risk, and the contract made the risk more acceptable. But this has to happen if you actually want to win a few games and don't develop your own pitching. It reminds me of John Hart's Indians deals: Dave Burba, etc.
the real thing to watch is whether a few more wins allows the Reds to draw more fans, to carry a bigger payroll and to be in play for other cost-dependent moves. It's like improving your bathroom-- if you're selling your house and you've got a really bad bathroom, then a better bathroom might more than pay for itself. But it's too bad that the bathroom wasn't already in decent shape.